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Herman Webster Mudgett (alias H.H. Holmes) Published Resource List

Voluntarily compiled by Marsha Peterson-Maass of the Chicago Genealogical Society

This is by no means an exhaustive list and does not include private or special collection holdings.

 

Medium

Title

Description

Book

99 Nooses : Illinois Justice at the End of a Rope, 1779-1896
author, Kale Meggs
Rockford, Ill. : Black Oak Media, 2012

Between 1779 and 1896, ninety-eight men and one woman were legally executed by hanging in the state of Illinois. Some were innocent, but most were guilty. Includes the story of H.H. Holmes, the most notorious and evil man to ever walk the streets of Chicago.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

A Competent Witness:  Georgiana Yoke and The Trial of H.H. Holmes

Author, Nickels, Judith

2014, Judith Nickels

All the young men at the Siegel Cooper department store admire Georgiana Yoke, the charming new clerk just arrived in Chicago ahead of the 1893 World’s Fair. They wager it won’t take long for some lucky fellow to lure her away from her job, and they’re right. After a brief and heady courtship, she marries a charismatic, wealthy entrepreneur.

A happy ending, but for one catch. Georgiana’s affectionate new husband, Dr. Henry H. Holmes, is also a swindler, a kidnapper, and will one day be known as America’s first serial killer.

Carefully researched and closely based on real events, A Competent Witness recasts the infamous story of H. H. Holmes as it unfolded to the woman he cruelly deceived.

Book

"America's Serial Killers: Portraits in Evil"
producer, Centre Communications
Distributed by Mill Creek Entertainment, ©2009

Chapter 2: "Killers without conscience: H.H. Holmes and Jane Toppan"  Warning: contains material suitable only for adult audiences.
"America's Serial Killers: Portraits in Evil will strip the covers from a world of profiling, forensic science and painful investigation as we expose history's most brutal serial killers. There is a darkness in humanity that has manifested itself in a lust for blood throughout the ages . . . But in the middle of the 20th century a new and chilling phenomenon emerged in post-war Western society...the serial killer. As if fashioned from our nightmares, they terrify and fascinate us. Lurking behind masks of bland normality they often evade capture for years, decades or eternity. They are America's serial killers."--Container.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Video on DVD

"America's Serial Killers: Portraits in Evil"
producer, Centre Communications
Distributed by Mill Creek Entertainment, ©2009

Chapter 2: "Killers without conscience: H.H. Holmes and Jane Toppan"
"A 10-part journey into darkness"--Container.  Warning: contains material suitable only for adult audiences.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

eVideo

"Author Erik Larson Discusses the 1893 Chicago World's Fair" on NBC's Today Show
author, Ann Curry
New York : NBCUniversal Media, LLC., 2003

Best-selling author Erik Larson's latest book tells the story of Chicago as it gears up for the 1893 World's Fair and the unsavory character who preyed on dozens of women who had come to Chicago to see the fair. The book is called "The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair That Changed America."

eBook

[graphic novel series]
The Beast of Chicago: The Murderous Career of H. H. Holmes (A Treasury of Victorian Murder)
author, Rick Geary
NBM Publishing (April 1, 2004)

He was the world's first serial killer and he existed in the late 19th century, operating around the Chicago World's Fair, building a literal house of horrors, replete with chutes for dead bodies, gas chambers, surgical rooms. He methodically murdered up to 200 people, mostly young women. The infamous H.H. Holmes is the next subject of Geary's award-winning and increasingly popular series.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

Chicago Murders
author, Sewell Peaslee Wright
New York : Duell, Slaon and Pearce, 1945

Chapter 4: "1894: The case of H.H. Holmes / by John Bartlow Martin"

Book

City of the Century
author, Donald L. Miller
New York : Simon & Schuster, ©1996

This vol. is about Chicago's 19th century history.

DVD

City of the Century
author, Austin Hoyt, et. al.
WGBH Educational Foundation : Window to the World Communications, Inc. : Distributed by PBS Home Video, [2003]

City of the Century tells how in just 60 years Chicago grew from a remote, swampy frontier town into one of the most explosively alive cities in the world. "Chicago by 'L'" is part travelogue, part history, and part tour of Chicago's neighborhoods by 'L', Chicago's elevated train.

Book

Demon Doctors: Physicians As Serial Killers
author, Kenneth V. Iserson
Tucson, Ariz. : Galen Press, ©2002

Chapter 3: "Nightmare on 63rd Street : Herman Webster Mudgett, M.D., alias Dr. H.H. Holmes; World's Columbian Exposition of 1893"
"When those to whom we entrust our health act utterly against our interests and cause harm or even death, it is unsettling in the extreme. That some have done so deliberately and repeatedly is the stuff of nightmares. For these and other reasons, the subject matter of this book is, to put it bluntly, about as sensational as it gets . . . Possibly the most sinister of these infamous physicians is Dr. Herman Webster Mudgett (alias Dr. H.H. Holmes), whose prodigious sexual appetite and morbid preoccupation with his wish to develop a race of giants led him to torture, kill, and cremate his victims in the basement of his vast Chicago 'consulting rooms.' Although 'Holmes' confessed to killing 27 people, the author estimates that he is more likely to have had as many as 150 victims, justifying his designation as America's 'first and most prolific serial killer.'" James McGuire, Ph.D.  Copyright © 2002 Massachusetts Medical Society.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

Depraved : The Shocking True Story of America's First Serial Killer
author, Harold Schechter
New York : Pocket Books, ©1994

"True account of the life of killer H.H. Holmes," whose real name was Herman Mudgett.

Audiobook on CD

Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic & Madness and the Fair That Changed America
author, Erik Larson
Santa Ana, CA : Books on Tape, 2003

During the time of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, Dr. Henry Holmes built a torture palace to which he lured 27 victims, mostly young women. While the fair ushered in a new epoch in American history, Holmes marked the emergence of the serial killer, who thrived on the forces transforming the country.

Book

Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic & Madness and the Fair That Changed America ◊◊◊
author, Erik Larson
New York : Crown Publishers, ©2003

Two men, each handsome and unusually adept at his chosen work, embodied an element of the great dynamic that characterized America's rush toward the twentieth century. The architect was Daniel Hudson Burnham, the fair's brilliant director of works and the builder of many of the country's most important structures, including the Flatiron Building in New York and Union Station in Washington, D.C. The murderer was Henry H. Holmes, a young doctor who, in a malign parody of the White City, built his "World's Fair Hotel" just west of the fairgrounds--a torture palace complete with dissection table, gas chamber, and 3,000-degree crematorium. Burnham overcame tremendous obstacles and tragedies as he organized the talents of Frederick Law Olmsted, Charles McKim, Louis Sullivan, and others to transform swampy Jackson Park into the White City, while Holmes used the attraction of the great fair and his own satanic charms to lure scores of young women to their deaths. What makes the story all the more chilling is that Holmes really lived, walking the grounds of that dream city by the lake. The Devil in the White City draws the reader into a time of magic and majesty, made all the more appealing by a supporting cast of real-life characters, including Buffalo Bill, Theodore Dreiser, Susan B. Anthony, Thomas Edison, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, and others. In this book the smoke, romance, and mystery of the Gilded Age come alive as never before. Erik Larson's gifts as a storyteller are magnificently displayed in this rich narrative of the master builder, the killer, and the great fair that obsessed them both.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

Devil's Disciple: The Deadly Dr. H.H. Holmes
author, Judy Miller Snavely
Bloomington, IN : AuthorHouse, ©2006

A biography of H. H. Holmes with case studies.

Book

The Devil's Dozen: How Cutting-edge Forensics Took Down 12 Notorious Serial Killers
author, Katherine M Ramsland
New York : Berkley Books, 2009

Case Study 1: "H.H. Holmes : deduction, determination, and dogged persistence"
"Katherine Ramsland has brilliantly captured the insights and drama of some fascinating cases" (Dr. Henry Lee) in her previous bestselling books. Now she examines the case histories of twelve of the most notorious serial killers of the last one hundred years, and answers the questions: What clues did they leave behind? How were they eventually caught? How was each twist and turn of their crimes matched by the equally compelling weapons of science and logic? From exploring the nineteenth century's earliest investigative tools to remarkable twenty-first century CSI advances, The Devil's Dozen provides a fascinating window into the world of those who kill-and those who dedicate their lives to bringing them to justice.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Video on DVD

"Ghost Hunter Collection"
author, Michael Jones
LaCrosse, WI : Echo Bridge Home Entertainment, ©2011

Seven paranormal films that delve into the supernatural world featuring detailed investigations in various haunted locations. -- Echo Bridge web page.  Includes H. H. Holmes.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

eVideo

[parapsychology video]
"Ghost Stories 4"
intuitive, Marilene Isaacs, et. al.
Monarch Films, Inc. : Made available through hoopla, 2011

Following the Dead spotlights the life of legendary serial killer, H.H. Holmes by tracing his footsteps and his eerie past. As Dan T. Hall and his crew continue to communicate with the other side, view their actual footage from Hell's Gate, Black Moon Manor and Holmes' historic cottage.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Movie

"H.H. Holmes: America's First Serial Killer"
documentary film by John Borowski
produced by Waterfront Productions

The story behind America's first serial killer who terrorized Chicago during the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. Chronicles his grisly life from childhood, to the cross-country man hunt to find him, and finally to his incarceration and execution.
→→→ Also on Netflix and Amazon.com

Portfolio on microfiche

"Holmes, the arch fiend : or, A carnival of crime : the life, trial, confession and execution of H.H. Holmes : twenty-seven lives sacrificed to this monstrous ogre's insatiable appetite"
Cincinnati : Barclay & Co., [189-]

Collection of trials on microfiche, 189A.

Book

Holmes' Own Story
author, H. H. Holmes

An autobiography by H. H. Holmes

eBook

The Holmes-Pitezel Case: A History of the Greatest Crime of the Century and of the Search for the Missing Pitezel Children
author, Frank P. Geyer
[Philadelphia, Penn. : s.n., 1896]

Trial of Dr. H. H. Holmes (the alias of Herman W. Mudgett, 1861-1896) for the murder of Benjamin F. Pitezel and his children.

Book

I, Monster: Serial Killers in Their Own Chilling Words
author, Tom Philbin
Amherst, N.Y. : Prometheus Books, 2011

Case Study 8:  "H. H. Holmes"
Synopsis: What goes through the dark minds of such notorious killers as Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, David Berkowitz ("Son of Sam"), John Wayne Gacy, Dennis Rader (the "BTK Killer"), and others? In this chilling book, you'll read exactly what they were thinking in their own words as they committed horrible crimes. Using court transcripts and police interviews, veteran true-crime and crime-fiction writer Tom Philbin has compiled the testimony of twenty infamous serial killers-nineteen men and one woman. For fans of crime stories who look for realism, this book is like no other. The descriptions couldn't be more realistic since, in effect, the book is written by the serial killers themselves. Their words range from the bizarre and weirdly fascinating to the revolting and horrific. In each case, Philbin provides a background profile to give readers a sense of the context from which these monsters emerged. Though they come from different backgrounds, nationalities, and generations, their words do reveal certain common elements. Not one evinces any sense of compassion or sensitivity in regard to their victims. They appear to be unable to control the impulses that lead them to kill. And in many cases, they derive a perverse sexual satisfaction from their deeds. Taking true-crime reading to a new level of immediacy, this disturbing book offers a glimpse into the worst side of human nature.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

eBook

Inside the Murder Castle: Investigating Chicago's First Serial Killer, H.H. Holmes
author, Adam Selzer
Woodbury, Minn. : Llewellyn Publications, 2012

Biography of H. H. Holmes.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

Introduction: Meditations on Murder, or What is so Philosophical about Serial Killers?
authors, S Waller; William E Deal
Wiley-Blackwell : Oxford, UK

This chapter contains sections titled:  How Common Are Serial Killings?  What is a Serial Killer?  I Think Therefore I Kill: The Philosophical Musings of Serial Killers;  Can You Blame Them? Ethics, Evil, and Serial Killing;  Dangerous Infatuations: The Public Fascination with Serial Killers;  A Eulogy for Emotion: The Lack of Empathy and the Urge to Kill;  Creepy Cognition: Talking and Thinking about Serial Killers;  Psycho-ology: Killer Mindsets and Meditations on Murder;  A Solemn Afterword: A Message from the Victim's Network;  A Timeline of Serial Killers

Movie

"Madness in the White City"
documentary film directed by Bill Kurtis
produced by National Geographic Channel

This program investigates the life of a 19th-Century serial killer who fabricatedd a real-life house of horror at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair.
→→→ Also on Netflix and Amazon.com

Book

Midwest Maniacs
author, Tom Baker
Atglen, Pa. : Schiffer, 2011

Chapter 4: "H.H. Holmes"  Meet 18 of the Midwests most atrocious and vile human beings. Read histories of murder and mayhem committed by individuals with burning anger and contempt for societal norms, and witness the macabre visions of their personal demons driving them to commit these heinous acts.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Musical Score

"The Peculiar Case of Dr. H.H. Holmes: For Baritone and Prepared Piano"
composer, Libby Larsen
Minneapolis, Minnesota : Libby Larsen Publishing ; [United States] : Kenwood Editions, [2010]

Herman Webster Mudgett was one of the first documented serial killers in America. Larsen wrote the libretto for this work based on his confessions and the accounts of Detective Robert Corbitt.

eBook

Psychopath
author, Katherine M Ramsland
New York : RosettaBooks, ©2011

Also entitled, Psychopath (Crimescape Book 9)
H. H. Holmes is commonly viewed as a real-life Hannibal Lecter, a devious and cunning serial killer without equal. Holmes used the persona of a successful doctor and entrepreneur to draw untold numbers of young women to his three-story Chicago hotel to experiment on before killing them. Not one to waste, he'd often deflesh the corpses to sell the skeletons to medical schools. He enjoyed trying out methods of murder and watching his victims die. Scientists from his era believed Holmes' brain would unlock the secret of his perversity, but he denied them the chance to find out. Today, we can figure him out without access to his brain. We know more today about the neuroscience of sadistic psychopaths and we can better understand what his brain--if dissected--would reveal. For the first time, we can look to research findings about killers to decode Holmes's vile behavior.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Movie

Serial Killer Culture [Borowski's interview gives brief references to H. H. Holmes]
documentary film by John Borowski
produced by Waterfront Productions

Thirteen artists and collectors open up about their fascination with serial killers, creating art and searching for murderous artifacts.  Serial Killer Culture examines the reasons why artists and collectors are fascinated by serial killers. Through music, painting, filmmaking, writing, and collecting, thirteen individuals are interviewed about creating art and searching for murderous artifacts.
→→→ Also on Netflix and Amazon.com

Book

Serial Killers
author, Seth H. Pulditor
Pittsburgh : Eldorado Ink, [2013]

Presents case studies of serial killers from the late nineteenth century to the early twenty-first century; describes the lives and backgrounds of each killer, and examines the police investigations and how the killings affected society.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

Serial Killers: The World's Most Evil
author, Nigel Blundell
Barnsley : Wharncliffe True Crime, 2010

"On an internationally acknowledged 'Scale of Evil,' these are the world's worst serial killers. The qualifications for entry to this list of the vilest criminals of all time are a propensity for sadism, torture and murder without a shred of remorse. Using expert evidence, this book looks behind the shocking headlines and delves into the minds of monsters. What drove them to crime? What turned seemingly ordinary members of society into sick slayers? How did they self-justify their heinous deeds? And, quite simply, how did they get away with murder? Included in this catalog of the world's most evil killers are men who committed crimes so monstrous that they almost defy belief--yet to their neighbors and work colleagues, these men seemed quite normal."--Amazon.com
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Article

"Serial Killing and the Postmodern Self"
author, Anthony King
Sage Publications, History of the Human Sciences, 19, no. 3 (2006): 109-125

Reference to H. H. Holmes.

eBook

Serial Killing for Profit : Multiple Murder for Money
author, Dirk C. Gibson
Santa Barbara : ABC-CLIO, 2009

Serial Killing for Profit: Multiple Murder for Money addresses a gap in the existing literature by documenting one dozen of the most notorious perpetrators of commercial serial murder-murderers who kill to secure inheritances and pensions, to sell possessions or even the body itself, or as murderers-for-hire. In these pages, readers will encounter some of the nation's most infamous and disturbing criminals, including "America's first serial killer," Herman Mudgett . . .
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Portfolio

"Souvenirs"
creator, Haley Paul
[Santa Barbara, Calif.] : Haley Paul, [2012]

Consists of two pieces of leather, lined with black and tan striped corduroy, attached with leather straps to resemble a suitcase. Straps have magnetic closure.
"5 copies of this edition were created in the Fall of 2012 by Haley Paul in an Artist's Books class at the College of Creative Studies. Each leather suite-case consists of 5 fabric sheets with heat-sublimated illustrations addressing the dark side of the Chicago World's Fair in 1893. America's first serial killer, H.H. Holmes, masked his terrible work behind the wonder and excitement of unsuspecting travelers to this event, one of the greatest in history. In the history of bandanas and souvenir scarves, there is an interesting interaction between the remembering of exciting historical events and the inevitable darkness of human actions. In a few hundred years, these ghostly keepsakes changed greatly, from George Washington's first commemorative bandana to the identifying attire of present day criminal gangs. All text was appropriated from Erik Larson's The Devil in the White City, of Crown Publishers, 2003."--Haley Paul, on leaf inserted in pocket.

Book

Speaking Ill of the Dead : Jerks in Chicago History
author, Adam Selzer
Guilford, Conn. : Globe Pequot Press, ©2012

Chapter 9: "H. H. Holmes: the devil of murder castle"
A delightfully wicked look at the badly behaved characters who shaped the history of the Windy City through their deeds and misdeeds. Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Chicago History features twenty-five short profiles of notorious bad guys, perpetrators of mischief, visionary if misunderstood thinkers, and other colorful antiheroes from the history of the Windy City. It reveals the dark side of some well-known and even revered characters from Chicago's past—both part-time Jerks and others who were Jerks through and through.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

Book

The Strange Case of Dr. H.H. Holmes
author, John Borowski
West Hollywood, Calif. : Waterfront Productions, ©2005

"Torture chambers, acid vats, secret passageways. At the height of his criminal career, the infamous Dr. H.H. Holmes designed his castle of horrors in Chicago, where he rented rooms to unsuspecting victims visiting the 1893 World's Fair. Further benefiting from his victims, Holmes sold their skeletons to local medical schools"--Back cover.
→→→ Also on Amazon.com

eBook

"The trial of Herman W. Mudgett, alias H.H. Holmes, for the murder of Benjamin F. Pitezel : in the Court of Oyer and Terminer and General Jail Delivery and Quarter Sessions of the Peace, in and for the city and county of Philadelphia, commonwealth of Pennsylvania, October 28, 29, 30, 31 and November 1 and 2, 1895"
author, Pennsylvania Court of Oyer and Terminer (Philadelphia County)
Philadelphia : George T. Bisel, law publisher, Bookseller and stationer, 1897. 
Making of Modern Law : Trials, 1600-1926.

Reproduction of the original from the New York City Bar.

Article

"Weapons used by juveniles and adult offenders in sexual homicides: An empirical analysis of 29 years of US data"
author, Heng Choon Chan (Oliver), et. al.
Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling, v5 n3 (October 2008): 189-208

"This study underscores the importance of analyses of specific types of murderers . . ."  Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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